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Different strokes for different folks when it comes to Linux desktops

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You might have noticed that I used the term "different strokes for different folks" in the headline of this article. I think it sums up well the issue of choosing a desktop environment because there simply is no one desktop that will appeal to everyone, no matter how great it is or how many people like it.

Personally, I prefer classic desktop environments like Xfce because they simply meld well with how I like to work. I find using them to be much faster and more intuitive when I am multitasking or just moving around my desktop.

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14.04 LTS Now in Feature Freeze

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The archive is now in Feature Freeze as we preprare the release of 14.04 LTS in April.

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AMD Press Talks Up Major Open-Source Linux Driver Features

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Good news: AMD's press / global communications team is finally talking up their open-source Linux graphics driver features. Bad news: they appear to still need lots of training over their own Linux graphics drivers. Or is there some Linux driver shake-up happening? Here's some of what they are promoting right now with the AMD Linux graphics driver.

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Linux-based platform aims to speed M2M development

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Called Legato, the embedded platform runs Wind River Linux and comes with pre-integrated and validated components that provide connectivity to any cloud, any network and any peripheral.

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Reven meets Kickstarter Goal, headed for Linux

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Reven recently announced the team has reached its Kickstarter funding goal, bringing some more awesome 2D platformer goodness to the Linux platform. Varia games also plans on bringing the title to OS X, as well as the Wii U. Monthly updates are planned to be broadcast on the popular gaming video platform, A public demo and eta keys should show up in the next few months.

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Rikomagic MK902 LE is an ARM-based Linux PC

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The folks at UK-based Cloudsto have added a new device to their range of small, ARM-based Linux computers.

The Rikomagic MK902 LE is a small box with a Rockchip quad-core processor, 2GB of RAM, and up to 16GB of storage. It ships with Ubuntu Linux, and it’s available from the Cloudsto shop for £94.99 and up, or about $159.

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Linux snapshot: Pay rates and employers with the most job ads

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Linux experts get higher pay checks, better opportunities as their skills are still hard-to-find

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New Distro Planned, Example KDE, and Linux Bucks

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It was hard to pick out just a few stories to relay today. ComputerWorld says folks with Linux skills get paid really well. Big changes may be afoot over at Fedora and a new distribution is on the drawing board. Finally, has "Nine Lessons Other Desktops Can Learn from KDE."

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Motorola MWC announcements: Smartwatch, Moto X in India, Motomaker in Europe

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Motorola believes that it will be a compromise if they try to include other OS ecosystems in their products. “We’d have to compromise if we spread across ecosystems.” When asked if they have any plans for a Windows Phone, now that they are free from Google, the reply was simple : “We are committed to Android.” Also Motorola is looking to keep the UI clean and add as less customisations as possible. “This approach allows us to create, simple, meaningful experiences – like provide software updates quicker than competitors.”
The smartwatch that motorola is working on will most probably run on Android too. When asked about it, the reply was “”All I can comment is stay tuned, it won’t be running Tizen

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Rugged mini-PC runs Linux on quad-core G-Series SoC

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A Fit-PC4 “Value” model is also available, which uses one of AMD’s older dual-core G-Series APUs, similar to that found in the Fit-PC3. The Fit-PC3 forms the basis for the Linux Mint-ready MintBox Basic and MintBox Pro. Last year, CompuLab also spun off a Fit-PC3i model specifically aimed at signage, surveillance, and telecommunications applications.

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More in Tux Machines

Leftovers: KDE


  • 4 Useful Cinnamon Desktop Applets
    The Cinnamon desktop environment is incredibly popular, and for good reason. Out of the box it offers a clean, fast and well configured desktop experience. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t make it a little better with a few nifty extras. And that’s where Cinnamon Applets come in. Like Unity’s Indicator Applets and GNOME Extensions, Cinnamon Applets let you add additional functionality to your desktop quickly and easily.
  • GNOME Core Apps Hackfest
    The hackfest is aimed to raise the standard of the overall core experience in GNOME, this includes the core apps like Documents, Files, Music, Photos and Videos, etc. In particular, we want to identify missing features and sore points that needs to be addressed and the interaction between apps and the desktop. Making the core apps push beyond the limits of the framework and making them excellent will not only be helpful for the GNOME desktop experience, but also for 3rd party apps, where we will implement what they are missing and also serve as an example of what an app could be.
  • This Week in GTK+ – 21
    In this last week, the master branch of GTK+ has seen 335 commits, with 13631 lines added and 37699 lines removed.

Leftovers: OSS and Sharing

  • Puppet Unveils New Docker Build and Phased Deployments
    Puppet released a number of announcements today including the availability of Puppet Docker Image Build and a new version of Puppet Enterprise, which features phased deployments and situational awareness. In April, Puppet began helping people deploy and manage things like Docker, Kubernetes, Mesosphere, and CoreOS. Now the shift is helping people manage the services that are running on top of those environments.
  • 9 reasons not to install Nagios in your company
  • Top 5 Reasons to Love Kubernetes
    At LinuxCon Europe in Berlin I gave a talk about Kubernetes titled "Why I love Kubernetes? Top 10 reasons." The response was great, and several folks asked me to write a blog about it. So here it is, with the first five reasons in this article and the others to follow. As a quick introduction, Kubernetes is "an open-source system for automating deployment, scaling and management of containerized applications" often referred to as a container orchestrator.
  • Website-blocking attack used open-source software
    Mirai gained notoriety after the Krebs attack because of the bandwidth it was able to generate — a record at well over 600 gigabits a second, enough to send the English text of Wikipedia three times in two seconds. Two weeks later, the source code for Mirai was posted online for free.
  • Alibaba’s Blockchain Email Repository Gains Technology from Chinese Open Source Startup
    Onchain, an open-source blockchain based in Shanghai, will provide technology for Alibaba’s first blockchain supported email evidence repository. Onchain allows fast re-constructions for public, permissioned (consortium) or private blockchains and will eventually enable interoperability among these modes. Its consortium chain product, the Law Chain, will provide technology for Ali Cloud, Alibaba’s computing branch. Ali Cloud has integrated Onchain’s Antshares blockchain technology to provide an enterprise-grade email repository. Onchain provides the bottom-layer framework for Ali Cloud, including its open-source blockchain capabilities, to enable any company to customize its own enterprise-level blockchain.
  • Netflix on Firefox for Linux
    If you're a Firefox user and you're a little fed up with going to Google Chrome every time in order to watch Netflix on your Linux machine, the good news is since Firefox 49 landed, HTML5 DRM (through the Google Widevine CDM (Content Decryption Manager) plugin) is now supported. Services that use DRM for HTML5 media should now just work, such as Amazon Prime Video. Unfortunately, the Netflix crew haven't 'flicked a switch' yet behind the scenes for Firefox on Linux, meaning if you run Netflix in the Mozilla browser at the moment, you'll likely just come across the old Silverlight error page. But there is a workaround. For some reason, Netflix still expects Silverlight when it detects the user is running Firefox, despite the fact that the latest Firefox builds for Linux now support the HTML5 DRM plugin.
  • IBM Power Systems solution for EnterpriseDB Postgres Advanced Server
    The primary focus of this article is on the use, configuration, and optimization of PostgreSQL and EnterpriseDB Postgres Advanced Server running on the IBM® Power Systems™ servers featuring the new IBM POWER8® processor technology. Note: The Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 7.2 operating system was used. The scope of this article is to provide information on how to build and set up of PostgreSQL database from open source and also install and configure EnterpriseDB Postgres Advanced Server on an IBM Power® server for better use. EnterpriseDB Postgres Advanced Server on IBM Power Systems running Linux® is based on the open source database, PostgreSQL, and is capable of handling a wide variety of high-transaction and heavy-reporting workloads.
  • Valgrind 3.12 Released With More Improvements For Memory Debugging/Checking
  • [Valgrind] Release 3.12.0 (20 October 2016)
  • Chain Launches Open Source Developer Platform [Ed: If it’s openwashing, then no doubt Microsoft is involved]
  • LLVM Still Looking At Migration To GitHub
    For the past number of months the LLVM project has been considering a move from their SVN-based development process to Git with a focus on GitHub. That effort continues moving forward.
  • Lumina Desktop 1.1 Released With File Manager Improvements
    Lumina is a lightweight Qt-based desktop environment for BSD and Linux. We show you what's new in its latest release, and how you can install it on Ubuntu.
  • Study: Administrations unaware of IT vendor lock-in
    Public policy makers in Sweden have limited insight on how IT project can lead to IT vendor lock-in, a study conducted for the Swedish Competition Authority shows. “An overwhelming majority of the IT projects conducted by schools and public sector organisations refer to specific software without considering lock-in and different possible negative consequences”, the authors conclude.
  • How open access content helps fuel growth in Indian-language Wikipedias
    Mobile Internet connectivity is growing rapidly in rural India, and because most Internet users are more comfortable in their native languages, websites producing content in Indian languages are going to drive this growth. In a country like India in which only a handful of journals are available in Indian languages, open access to research and educational resources is hugely important for populating content for the various Indian language Wikipedias.
  • Where to find the world's best programmers
    One source of data about programmers' skills is HackerRank, a company that poses programming challenges to a community of more than a million coders and also offers recruitment services to businesses. Using information about how successful coders from different countries are at solving problems across a wide range of domains (such as "algorithms" or "data structures" or specific languages such as C++ or Java), HackerRank's data suggests that, overall, the best developers come from China, followed closely by Russia. Alarmingly, and perhaps unexpectedly, the United States comes in at 28th place.

OSS in the Back End

  • AtScale Delivers Findings on BI-Plus-Hadoop
    Business intelligence is the dominant use-case for IT organizations implementing Hadoop, according to a report from the folks at AtScale. The benchmark study also shows which tools in the Haddop ecosystem are best for particular types of BI queries. As we've reported before, tools that demystify and function as useful front-ends and connectors for the open source Hadoop project are much in demand. AtScale, billed as “the first company to allow business users to do business intelligence on Hadoop,” focused its study on the strengths and weaknesses of the industry’s most popular analytical engines for Hadoop – Impala, SparkSQL, Hive and Presto.
  • Study Says OpenStack at Scale Can Produce Surprising Savings
    Revenues from OpenStack-based businesses are poised to grow by 35 percent a year to more than $5 billion by 2020, according to analysts at 451 Research. In its latest Cloud Price Index, 451 Research analyzes the costs associated with using various cloud options to determine when it becomes better value to use a self-managed private cloud instead of public or managed cloud services. The idea is to createa complex pricing model that takes into consideration the major factors impacting total cost of ownership (TCO), including salaries and workload requirements.The 451 study found that because of the prevalence of suitably qualified administrators, commercial private cloud offerings such as VMware and Microsoft currently offer a lower TCO when labor efficiency is below 400 virtual machines managed per engineer. But where labor efficiency is greater than this, OpenStack becomes more financially attractive. In fact, past this tipping point, all private cloud options are cheaper than both public cloud and managed private cloud options.
  • How OpenStack mentoring breaks down cultural barriers
    Victoria Martinez de la Cruz is no stranger to OpenStack's mentorship opportunities. It's how she got her own start in OpenStack, and now a few years later is helping to coordinate many of these opportunities herself. She is speaking on a panel on mentoring and internships later this week at OpenStack Summit in Barcelona, Spain. In this interview, we catch up with Victoria to learn more about the details of what it's like to be a part of an open source internship, as well as some helpful advice for people on both sides of the mentoring process.